There is an apparently endless supply of books about writing. Very few of those books, surprisingly, offer a thorough and scholarly approach to the basics: words, sentences, and paragraphs. The New Oxford Guide to Writing
does. According to author Thomas S. Kane, writing is "an exercise of mind requiring the mastery of techniques anyone can learn." Kane's not claiming he can create a genius, but, as he says in his introduction, "you don't have to be a genius to write clear, effective English." The writing that Kane refers to here is expository and persuasive in nature--writing most likely to be required in day-to-day life. In great detail Kane explores the building of an essay, the development of paragraphs, the styling of sentences, the use of diction, and, finally, issues of punctuation. It is unlikely that very many writers have scrutinized the building blocks of language the way Kane has, but it's never too late. Rare is the sourcebook that can offer so much both to beginners and experts alike. And anyone who loves words will thrill to encounter--if he or she hasn't done so already--the freight-train sentence, parataxis, the triadic sentence, polysyndeton, asyndeton, collocation, and zeugma. --Jane Steinberg
From Library Journal
Kane, who also wrote the earlier Oxford Guide to Writing (1983), leads the student in some detail through such fundamentals as planning the writing project, grammar, style, and things to avoidall with a view to developing command over the niceties of proper expository prose. The early chapters conclude with short practice exercises. Throughout, excerpts from distinguished authors are offered as examples. Major sections are devoted to the essay, paragraph, sentence, diction, description and narration, and punctuation. A bit stuffy for general readers, and aspiring creative and professional writers might not buy into all this self-conscious correctness. Still, suited for use in college English courses or as an extra reference in libraries not overstocked on this subject. William A. Donovan, Chicago P.L.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.